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Agricultural News

Conservation Innovation Grant Proposals Sought

Wed, 25 Jan 2012 15:12:17 CST

Conservation Innovation Grant Proposals Sought Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) State Conservationist, Ronald L. Hilliard today announced the availability of approximately $150,000 in fiscal year 2012 to fund projects designed to stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies through its State Level Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) in fiscal year 2012.

"The State level CIG program will provide opportunities for producers and organizations that might not have competed effectively at the National level," State Conservationist Ronald L. Hilliard said. "These individuals and organizations can provide valuable assistance to NRCS and Oklahoma's agricultural producers by demonstrating innovative technologies that can put conservation on the land."

NRCS will use these competitive grants to seek creative solutions to assist producers with emerging and traditional agricultural and natural resource issues. These emerging issues include energy conservation, nutrient management, soil health, productivity of grazing lands, wildlife, and priority landscapes.

The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) administers CIG. CIG, a component of NRCS's Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), provides competitive grants to federally-recognized Indian tribes, state and local units of governments, non-governmental organizations and individuals. CIG funds one-to-three year projects that target innovative on-the-ground conservation, including pilot projects and field demonstrations. The maximum federal contribution for each project is $75,000 at the state level. Larger federal contributions, up to $1 million are available through the National CIG program. The $150,000 in State level CIG funding will be used to address six subcategories:
1. Nutrient Management
2. Energy Conservation
3. Soil Health
4. Productivity and Environmental Health of grazing land
5. Wildlife
6. Priority Landscapes

The State Conservationist encourages beginning farmers and ranchers, limited resource farmers or ranchers, Indian tribes or community-based organizations that service these groups to apply for grants.

Interested applicants must submit proposals to NRCS's State Headquarters in Stillwater, OK by close of business on April 30, 2012. All CIG projects must include agricultural producers who meet EQIP eligibility requirements. For more information about the EQIP eligibility requirements, please click here.



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